I was walking down the driveway, after leaving mom and dad's house today, when I saw this man. He was on the other side of our property, going back and forth on a cable rope swing, free and happy as a kid. Untroubled by the burdens of adulthood and responsibility that can bog us down, so often, when we're grown.
He didn't notice me, at first, but quickly got on a bobcat and started clearing the land again, when he saw me observing him. Even though I know I really had no right, as this land's recently been sold, I still feel the pull of this land, which had been in our family for as long as I can remember. It really bothered me as I watched him knock down and destroy things, for many of these things had been a part of my childhood. For that reason the land still murmurs to me, speaking of family history and ghosts of the past. This will quieten soon though, swallowed up by time and new ownership.
The land continues to call mournfully, as this man goes happily about his business of destroying all, that I now see, I had foolishly taken for granted. There on that tree he just knocked down, I shared laughter with my five year old brother. We're swinging again on that wooden box swing, made by my dad, so long ago. Here again, we giggle as daddy pushed us high above, high enough to reach the treetops.
The bobcat buckets next push, takes away the memory of my moms laughter, as she watched my brother and I swing past, high enough to touch the sky. We'd scream happily on the way up and going back down I'd hear moms laughter as she joined in our merriment.
We'd stop for a time, then, turning in slow circles, knot up the cable, just for the swing to unwind in whirling circles, crossing our eyes and ripping screams of pure delight from our opened mouths. We'd do this several times, ignoring moms warning about us having to throw up, for that wouldn't happen to know it all kids, like my brother and I were.
I'm no longer that Kid Of Long Ago. I'm no longer that innocent who looked towards her mom and dad for all things. I am an adult, with adult responsibilities. So many times I have to look to my own daughter to be able to experience her childlike joy in life. And once in awhile, in my dreams, my imagination takes me again to that land next door,where I'm again that Kid Of Long Ago.
What saddens me is that I didn't realize just how important that property was to me, until today. I didn't realize how much I associated my emotions and memories with that land. Especially since I'll never experience those things again, nor can I talk to mom about the past, as she's no longer here with me.
It's not enough to know that only time and old age can take all my memories away completely. And hopefully senility won't take those memories away too. So, I really have to hang on to the few things I have left, that can still give me those memories of that Kid Of Long Ago. That's the family that shared those experiences, like my dad and brother, and the many pictures my mom took of things, throughout the years.